Official: reversible lanes opening in 2018
by Jon Gillooly
January 25, 2013 12:00 AM | 4587 views | 5 5 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Congestion builds on a Friday afternoon on Interstate 75 northbound after the interchange with Interstate 285 in June. A GDOT official said Thursday that the $951 million ‘reversible lanes’ toll-road project to alleviate traffic along Interstates 75 and 575 through Cobb and Cherokee counties is expected to be open to traffic in April 2018.<br>Staff/file
Congestion builds on a Friday afternoon on Interstate 75 northbound after the interchange with Interstate 285 in June. A GDOT official said Thursday that the $951 million ‘reversible lanes’ toll-road project to alleviate traffic along Interstates 75 and 575 through Cobb and Cherokee counties is expected to be open to traffic in April 2018.
Staff/file
slideshow
CUMBERLAND — The $951 million “reversible lanes” toll-road project along Interstates 75 and 575 through Cobb and Cherokee counties is expected to be open to traffic in April 2018.

That’s the message a state Department of Transportation official gave Wednesday at a Chamber luncheon at The Georgian Club.

The toll rate for the 29.7-mile road project has yet to be set by the State Road and Tollway Authority, but it will fluctuate depending on traffic. The goal is to have a speed limit of about 45 miles per hour, said Darryl VanMeter, administrator of GDOT’s Innovative Program Delivery Office.

The new lanes are projected to reduce travel time by 8 to 16 minutes on the general purpose lanes that will not be tolled. Trip times on the tolled lanes will be reduced by 34 to 52 minutes, he said.

The project will build two new, reversible lanes along the west side of I-75 between its interchanges with I-285 and I-575. The lanes will be separated from the existing interstate lanes by a barrier and will carry traffic south during morning commute hours and north in the evenings. North of the I-575 interchange, one new, reversible barrier-separated lane will be added in the I-75 center median to Hickory Grove Road, and a similar new lane will extend along I-575 to Sixes Road.

The project is being paid with $300 million in state gasoline taxes carried over from previous years, $236 million from a federal and state match, and a $270 million federal loan. In addition, the selected contractor will finance at least 10 percent of the estimated design-build cost of $750 to $820 million. That money will be repaid with bonds upon project completion, he said.

Right-of-way costs are $26 million.

The next step is for the state agency to select the contractor, which is scheduled for July.

Glenn Christian, chairman of the Vinings Business Association, applauded the project.

“I’m excited about it because this is such a great area to live in and a great area to do business in. That’s why we’re so congested,” Christian said. “I think we have a lot to offer at the low tax rate, the low cost of living and the great benefits of living in this community, so everybody is attracted to Cobb County, so to improve the transportation flow can only improve the overall standard of living that we provide in Cobb County.”

Judson Langley of Kennesaw, a senior vice president with Bank of North Georgia, who chairs the Cumberland Area Council, also expressed enthusiasm for the project.

“From seeing the video of the concept, it helps you understand how it can be impactful on the traffic because we know the traffic congests every morning heading south and every evening heading north, and I’ve been on those commutes all the way down into Atlanta for a number of years, so to me I think any type of addition like this would have a positive impact,” Langley said.

VanMeter gave his presentation to the Cumberland Area Council of the Cobb Chamber of Commerce.

Comments
(5)
Comments-icon Post a Comment
Steven in Kennesaw
|
January 25, 2013
2018??? Wow a whole 5 years to improve traffic. Some of us will be retired by then. The state of Georgia is so innovative and up and coming. By the time 2018 gets here this idea will be outdated. The toll lanes on I-85 have proven nothing but an idiotic idea.
mk-IMAGE- SBIMAGE
|
January 25, 2013
So let's see which contractor gets awarded the prize!

Whole 'looto' money can line pockets when you have a cool billion to play with!

Plus, this job won't be complete w/out illegal labor!

This billion should have gone towards an OUTER WESTERN LOOP, to take trucks AWAY from the city & suburbs.

Guess there's not enough money in this corrupt state to do something that would actually make a difference in the future!

This road will be bumper to bumper big rigs , as soon as the deepening of Port of Savannah opens to Chinese tankers!
Grr... haha
|
January 25, 2013
If more explanation marks and CAPS were used, I’d agree.
VFP42
|
January 25, 2013
Every lane on evey road on which private cars drive should be a toll lane. I am sick and tired of paying the way of people who think it's their God given right to drive everywhere they go.

You bought "bigger" in the country but work in the city. PAY YOUR OWN WAY TO THE CITY FOR WORK AND THEN BACK HOME TO YOUR MCMANSION IN THE BOONIES!
STWS
|
January 25, 2013
Did you miss the part about gas taxes paying a lot of it? Gas taxes pay to maintain the roads we have as well. Where do you think gas taxes come from?? Transit gets more direct subsidies from government than roads do.
*We welcome your comments on the stories and issues of the day and seek to provide a forum for the community to voice opinions. All comments are subject to moderator approval before being made visible on the website but are not edited. The use of profanity, obscene and vulgar language, hate speech, and racial slurs is strictly prohibited. Advertisements, promotions, and spam will also be rejected. Please read our terms of service for full guides